This story has been updated.
PURCHASE, N.Y. -- Montefiore Health System has had a strong presence in Westchester County for 25 years but is developing new partnerships that will continue to enhance healthcare locally, according to Dr. Steven M. Safyer.
Safyer, president and chief executive officer at Montefiore, was the featured speaker Monday at Manhattanville College during The Business Council of Westchester's Leadership Conversations Series.
Safyer said Montefiore has been successfully using about 2,000 specially trained staff to "manage care" by checking on 350,000 patients -- ranging from making sure they are taking their blood pressure medication to assuring a diabetes patient gets a followup eye exam.
"You can have affordable care that is high quality,'' he said.
Safyer had the highest praise for Montefiore's newest healthcare partner, White Plains Hospital, saying it has excellent tertiary care, highly-skilled nurses and he's discovered that "everybody smiles in the halls."
"It's warm. It's friendly. They do outstanding in patient satisfaction,'' Safyer said. "There's something about that culture you can learn from."
Safyer described the prospect of opening Montefiore's first "bedless hospital" in the Bronx, spanning 300,000 square feet over 11 floors. "It does everything, but it won't lie you down,'' he said. "Frankly, it's a lot safer to be at home than in a hospital."
"We all know how important healthcare is to economic development in Westchester,'' said Dr. Marsha Gordon, president and CEO of The Business Council of Westchester. "It's where the jobs are. It's where the real estate is happening and we are so pleased Montefiore is leading the way."
Gordon and John Ravitz, executive vice president of The Business Council, presented quarterly "Business Champion Awards" to Pace University for its continued expansion on its Pleasantville campus; Kawasaki Rail Car Inc. for its success in manufacturing trains and subways at the old Otis Elevator Co. plant in Yonkers; and First Niagara Bank for plans to move its tri-state regional headquarters to Tarrytown.
Accepting the awards were William McGrath, senior vice president and chief operating officer for the Westchester campuses of Pace University; Hiroji Iwasaki, chief executive officer of Kawasaki Rail Car; and David Ring, managing director of enterprise banking at First Niagara.
Monday's leadership talk was sponsored by First Niagara Bank.
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